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Table 5 Major and minor errors observed in phylogenetic trees constructed by students

From: Student construction of phylogenetic trees in an introductory biology course

Major error Group unit exam (n = 23) Individual final exam (n = 77) Group final exam (n = 22)
Incorrect relatedness 0 (0 %) 10 (13 %) 3 (14 %)
Incorrect traits 1 (4 %) 10 (13 %) 3 (14 %)
Contemporary descent 5 (22 %) 12 (16 %) 5 (23 %)
Minor error
Empty branches 6 (26 %) 31 (40 %) 5 (23 %)
Extra nodes 10 (43 %) 30 (39 %) 8 (36 %)
Side branches 0 (0 %) 7 (9 %) 1 (5 %)